— My apologies for not getting Saturday’s post-game stuff to you sooner. Had a friend going through a difficult time, and it was far more important for me to take care of that than to pass along the increasingly repetitive “here’s how they lost this one” stuff. Change the date, change the names, it’s all the same. Although, the way they lost this one has to take the cake for worst come from ahead defeats this season. Four goals in 1:48 with under five minutes to play? Wow.
— Kevin Dean wasn’t as angry, at least outwardly to us, about this loss as he’s been in losses past. Still, the officiating drew his ire…
“First of all, I thought that was a terrible call to send Leaderer off and not the other guy,” he said. “I mean, it’s not even close. This guy calls the score all the time and not the game, so I thought that was a terrible call.”
I asked Dean about not using his timeout after the game, and you saw those comments in the paper. My efforts to coach a hockey team would be laughable, I assure you of that…but me, I call that timeout after the fifth goal. There’s still three minutes left, you’re down one…maybe you can at least squash their very, very sizable momentum at that point.
Dean said he thought his team played hard and deserved to win the game, and also told me that he thought their effort on Saturday was a lot better than what he saw from them on Friday night.
“If we play like that, we’ll certainly get our share of wins.”
— There are around one or two game stories a year that make me want to go to every store that sells the paper and rip out the page its on so that nobody can ever see it. This would be one of them. With about five minutes to go, it was all set. There was a lead based on Trenton’s two shortest players, Jeff Lerg and Tony Zancanaro, coming up big. There were a few paragraphs about how maybe this was the start of their patented second half turnaround.
Instead, they’re now a team that, as of today, has lost 25 of its 39 games and has absolutely zero chance of making the playoffs. With 33 games to play, they’re nine points out of eighth place. But doesn’t it feel like they’re 33 points out with nine games left instead? This team has the feel of one going absolutely nowhere. I’d love it if they proved me wrong. But what about what anyone has seen in the results over the past few weeks would lead anyone to believe that this team will be playing meaningful games in April?
— Not sure if Trevor Kell has avoided a suspension for his match penalty for fighting on Saturday. He did play yesterday. All match penalties are reviewed by the league and generally carry a minimum of a one-game suspension.
— I really liked Justin Pender up front. Thought it allowed him to play his style of game more. I think a lot of what he brought to the table as a defenseman was built solely around his big shot…but he can play a lot more physical game as a forward and use his big body more to play down low and provide a presence the team doesn’t really have in that regard.
— Quite a few people in that locker room were irate with the David Leaderer call. There was quite a lot of complaining to the refs after the game as well. Makes it seem a little less coincidental that Trenton’s first power play didn’t come until 7:18 of the third period on Sunday.
— Jeff Lerg debuted his new mask and pads on Saturday. Was still wearing his MSU hockey pants, though. Dean said he thought Lerg played “pretty good.”
— Before Sunday’s game, Trenton activated Taylor Vichorek off the IR and placed Ryan Hayes on the IR.
— As I wrote in the paper, Dan Charleston was in attendance Saturday. Anyone expecting comments from him any time will be waiting quite a while, leave it at that. I’m not sure if he is allowed to travel with the team or practice with the team.
Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com